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Meeting plans how to support development in Attleborough - with 4,000 homes on the way

Mid Norfolk MP George Freeman with Janet Money of Dereham Cancer Care, 11/04/14

Mid Norfolk MP George Freeman with Janet Money of Dereham Cancer Care, 11/04/14

Archant

Councillors, developers and residents of a south Norfolk town attended a public meeting to discuss how to support an influx of development.

More than 50 people attended the meeting in Attleborough last week, which focused on bringing employment opportunities to the town to support the 4,000 homes proposed under the town’s Neighbourhood Plan.

The meeting, which was chaired by Mid-Norfolk MP and minister for life sciences George Freeman, looked at how the town’s position on the A11 corridor would be a perfect way to drive forward opportunities.

Councillor Richard Middleton, chairman of the Attleborough Neighbourhood Plan steering group, said: “While everyone acknowledges that providing the employment, infrastructure and services to support the new large scale development will be challenging, there was a feeling that if the private and public sectors work together and fully involve the community these challenges could be overcome.”

People living in the town have raised concerns over the homes, with worries centering on jobs, school places, overcrowded doctors surgeries and weak transport links.

Mr Freeman said: “Attleborough is facing all the familiar challenges of a historic market town coping with new housing and the need to combine growth with heritage and a strong local community.

“The opening of the newly dualled A11 this autumn corridor is bringing new housing and business opportunities to the town. But without infrastructure, road and rail links, a Town Centre Plan and local facilities, the risk is that the town loses is special character and becomes an A11 ‘dormitory’ town.”

The MP suggested that faster rural broadband and businesses working closer to home from converted farm buildings in small villages would allow for “prosperity and heritage”.

What do you think is needed in Attleborough? Contact reporter Lauren Cope on Lauren.cope@archant.co.uk or 07584 311473.

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